Monday, July 14, 2014

Book Review and Giveaway: Landline

By Melissa Amster

**Giveaway is now closed**

A couple of years ago, I read Rainbow Rowell's debut novel, Attachments. I enjoyed and devoured it. (See review here.) Her two books since then have been more for young or new adults, but I got them anyway. I absolutely loved Fangirl and it inspired me to write my own fan fiction (with a chick lit flair, of course). Eleanor and Park is still on my TBR pile, but I'm excited to read that too. However, as soon as I heard that Rainbow had a new chick lit novel coming out, I was all about making sure I got my hands on it. And I did...when I met Rainbow at BEA this past spring. Needless to say, I was all excited to crack this book open and it did NOT disappoint!

Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble. That it’s been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems beside the point now. Maybe that was always beside the point. Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn’t expect to him to pack up the kids and go home without her. When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything. That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts . . . Is that what she’s supposed to do? Or would Georgie and Neal be better off if their marriage never happened? (Synopsis courtesy of St. Martin's Press.)

Landline is Rainbow's first novel with a surreal twist. (At least I'm assuming so, since I haven't heard anything surreal about Eleanor and Park.) Even though it's not exactly about time travel, it still carries the feel of that concept. I love books that have anything to do with time travel, so when I learned about the story line earlier this year, I was instantly sold. And Rainbow did a great job with this new portal through time. I thought it was very clever how she used a phone as a link to the past. There were some hilarious moments that came about as a result of this new discovery.

The characters definitely carried this story along. There were so many different layers to Georgie and those affected how she and Neal navigated their relationship. I enjoyed the flashbacks to how they met and started dating, as well as when they got engaged and then married. It made me think of how my husband and I first met and the journey from our courtship to our marriage. I liked the secondary characters too, especially Georgie's younger half-sister, Heather. She was a foil for Georgie, but they had this underlying friendship that came through to the surface. And Georgie's background with her friend Seth was interesting to read about, especially as it had an effect on her relationship with Neal. Her conversations with her daughters were a lot of fun, especially Noomi, who thought she was a cat and meowed most of the time. The interactions between Georgie and these secondary characters was both entertaining and revealing.

I had a couple of very minor complaints though. One was that the dialogue between Georgie and Neal seemed to go in circles and get redundant sometimes, losing my attention after a while. The other is that one part of the story seemed to drop off to make room for the other part. While the part that stuck around was satisfying, I wish there was more to the part that was left hanging.

Overall, I enjoyed Landline and Rainbow kept me guessing to the very end, turning the pages in anticipation of what would come next. I like her writing style and look forward to reading whatever she comes out with next!

Of course, I have to cast this book as a movie because it would be so cool on the big screen!
Georgie: Drew Barrymore
Neal: I had a hard time casting him, as he was difficult to visualize. The descriptions contrasted each other. My mind keeps going to Adam Pally, but that still seems like a stretch.
Seth: Paul Rudd
Heather: Maia Mitchell
Georgie's mom: Holly Hunter
Scotty: Aziz Ansari

Thanks to St. Martin's Press for the book in exchange for an honest review. They have TWO copies for some lucky readers in the US and/or Canada.

How to win:
Please tell us: What household device would you like to possess magical powers and what would it do?

One entry per person.

Please include your e-mail address or another way to reach you if you win. Entries without contact information will NOT be counted (and we do NOT count "Google +" as contact information).

US/Canada only. Giveaway ends July 20th at midnight EST.

More by Rainbow Rowell:

54 comments:

Vox Libris said...

I wish my bathroom cleaning products could read my mind and clean the toilets, floors, tubs, and sinks without me ever having to lift a finger,

Vox Libris said...

Oh! An email address: voxlibrisblog@gmail.com

Bonnie Franks said...

bonlyn55@yahoo.com

I think the stove should have a special burner where you could pile a pan with ingredients and the stove would make you a new recipe based upon your taste. Cool, huh? I guess I really mean hot, huh?

Logan Collins said...

A self-cleaning bathroom!

Janine said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janine said...

I would love a catbox that instantly dissolved cat poop and my broom to automatically sweep. I have to sweep the entire house every morning because cats track little around.

kinini01@hotmail.com

StephTheBookworm said...

Hmm. It would be nice if the washing machine could fold the clothes. :)

Stephaniet117 at Yahoo dot com

TinaB said...

I wish the dishwasher would load & unload itself!
Brannanflooring@aol.com

AiringMyDirtyLaundry said...

I so want to read this!

And I want a dryer that also folds and puts away the laundry.

Margie said...

I wish my Swiffer would clean our wooden floors by itself.
mtakala1 AT yahoo DOT com

Cher B said...

I love Rainbow Rowell's writing, you really should read Eleanor and Park at your earliest opportunity!
I seriously want the device featured notably on the Jetsons: step in and you are showered, made-up, coiffed and dressed in one fell swoop. I might become a morning person that way!
Thanks for the great review and the chance to win!

Suzanne said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Suzanne said...

My wash machine and dryer. Really. I want them to work on their own, and fold the clothes when they are done. I live in my laundry room some days! lol!

Amber @ A Little Pink in the Cornfields said...

I would give my closet magical powers so that it can pull together cute outfits everyday. I am so lazy, and just throw on whatever, even though I have nice clothes that would make multiple outfits! lol.

missamberljohnson at gmail dot com

Linda Kish said...

I wish the dishwasher had magical powers and could sense that the dishes were dirty, fill, run and empty itself. Big problem in our house.

lkish77123 at gmail dot com

Kim W. said...

My TV.
On it I could pull a menu up on the screen where I could select which household chore needed doing and it would take care of it all. Vacuuming, laundry, cooking.....!!

Charlotte said...

Any thing that could keep the floors clean and dust everything in the house.
CABWNANA1@bellsouth.net

Amy O. said...

I hate emptying the dishwasher so that's my wish - for the dishes to magically get themselves from the dw to the cabinets.

cheermom140@yahoo.com

JJT said...

Have my dishwasher load and unload itself! jtretin at aol dot com

Bridget T. said...

A dryer that folds clothes would be nice!

iambtinrb@aol.com

Amy Mays said...

A magical closet that keeps up with all the clothes I lust after on Pin interest.

I also would love a internet portal room like in champion(Legend Series) where can stand in room and voice command what you want to search the internet for and have hologram pictures,video's and music show up around you. Thats the nerd in me.

Amymays53@gmail.com

Katherine Ivan said...

I wish I could chuck all the laundry willy-nilly into the washer and have the machine clean, dry, iron, mend, and put away all the clothes, towels, and linens. I'd also love for it to make any necessary alterations (hem as well as take items in or out depending on the wearer's current height and weight).

Katherine Ivan said...

Derp ... e-mail address: kateivan {at} aol {dot} com

jpetroroy said...

A clock that could add extra hours to the day jpetroroy at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

I wish the washer and dryer would do the laundry itself!

Thanks for hosting this giveaway!

-Cate
cat123hen(at)aol(dot)com

Jessica Meddick said...

I wish my shower could wash my hair for me and get me all washed and ready for the day in just 30 seconds, haha.

-Jessica M
walkingcorpse11@hotmail.com

Susan T. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Susan T. said...

I wish for my microwave to become a food transporter like in the old Star Trek TV show so I could just push a button and any food or drink I wanted would magically appear!
email: sueterendy@hotmail.com
twitter: @suekitty13

holdenj said...

The dishwasher. Someday, they'll make one that empties itself.
JHolden955(at)gmail(dot)com

Karen Hambly said...

I wish my fridge would re-stock itself.
s.hambly@sasktel.net

Jennifer H said...

Not sure what appliance but something that cleans the whole place!!
Jhuelsebusch@sbcglobal.net

Felicia said...

I absolutely hate dust and dusting. So some kind of invention that would suck all the dust out of my house!

Felicialso @gmail .com

Anita Yancey said...

For me it would have to be my kitchen stove, I would want it to cook my meals for me. Thanks for havng the giveaway.

ayancey1974(at)gmail(dot)com

Chanpreet said...

I'd like for the brooms and vacuums to have dust bunny sensors. That way I wouldn't be driven into rage by the sight of them they day after I sweep in that room. It's like they can sense a clean floor.

kaur_chanpreet(at)hotmail(dot)com

Carl Scott said...

I'd like a vacuum and mop that kept the floors clean all by themselves. No more dog hair, dust or sand, I'm in heaven.

Carl Scott said...

I got so excited by the idea I forgot to leave my email: carlscott(at)prodigy(dot)net(dot)mx
Thanks!

Jennifer Essad said...

my vacuum - it could clean any area in my house w/just my mind directing it

Vivian V. said...

I would love to have a machine like J.D. Robb (Nora Roberts) has in her In Death series. I think she calls it an autochef. All you have to do is program what you want to eat and it makes it for you. I don't know if it shops for groceries but that would be great too!
vjvereeke@hotmail.com

Melanie Backus said...

At 6:00 every evening, my stove and oven would produce a fabulously, delicious meal that my husband and I would enjoy.

mauback55 at gmail dot com

Anonymous said...

Oh, definitely bathroom cleaning products.

SuzyQ4PR(at)aol(dot)com

Rhonda G said...

rhondajgothier@yahoo.com

All purpose "cleaner" that would clean, vacuum, mop, and polish!,

Hailey Fish said...

I wish I had the ability to push a button on the wall next to my closet so that when I push it, it turns into a different wardrobe every time I push it. Only the latest fashions. Or that I could step into a room and come out with a gorgeous outfit and the perfect hairstyle.

fishiegirl22@yahoo.com

bn100 said...

oven- press a button and food magically appears cooked

bn100 said...

oven- press a button and food magically appears cooked

bn100candg at hotmail dot com

Anonymous said...

Lightswitches-flick off and back on and ta-da the room would be clean and spotless!

Ren dot flew at gmail dot com

Nova said...

the refrigerator. one that would order your food as you need it, then food would be delivered to your door at the best possible price!
sparkle40175@hotmail.com

Books and Java said...

I love the idea of the phone having magical powers. I have a landline too and it would be so cool for it to be magical and allow me to call the past. laura.p.bryant-1@hotmail.com

Tami said...

My vacuum. One that can vacuum the house on its own and vacuum the dogs and get all their hair off of them!
Tamileepronske at gmail dot com

Ro said...

Vacuum. We have a dog who never stops shedding! Enough said!!

Ro said...

Vacuum. Dog that never stops shedding! Enough said!

huelsebusch@earthlink.net

writeoncindy@yahoo.com said...

I would love to have a self cleaning refrigerator. writeoncindy (at) yahoo(dot) com
GREAT REVIEW!

Kaley @ Books Etc. said...

Is it super basic if I say tea kettle/pot? Imagine...perfect cup of tea steeped and prepared for you when you wake up. What I wouldn't do for a tea butler...

books.etc.blogger AT gmail DOT com

Jencey Gortney said...

I would like a magic lunch maker. I just open my lunch bag and my lunch for the following day appears.

jenceyg at gmail dot com
I follow on GFC,FB,and Twitter.

Melissa said...

Thanks to everyone for telling us what devices should have magical powers. So creative! I'd definitely want drawers and cabinets that could organize themselves. Then again, a self-organizing toy room would be a perk too!

Thanks to St. Martin's Press for sharing the book with our winners.

Random.org chose TWO winners from all entries with contact info. (One per person.)

Congrats to Amy O. (cheermom) and writeoncindy!